Note to anyone who ever doubted Jennifer Lopez could move fragrances: even before the launch of Love and Glamour — her newest women’s scent, coming this fall — she has already sold more than $1 billion worth of scents over the course of 16 launches. And industry sources estimate her fragrance portfolio could do $150 million at retail this year.
While there were plenty of naysayers when Lopez pioneered the category in 2002, in the ensuing years, half of Hollywood has followed her lead — and that suits the ambitious Lopez just fine.
“More power to them,” said Lopez in an exclusive interview with WWD on Wednesday afternoon. “I am very competitive, but I don’t look at it [as a competition.] I’ve always thought that authenticity, at the end of the day, wins, and the cream always rises to the top. I really don’t worry about other people, because I’m in competition with myself.
“I feel like a lot of people get into it just for money — it’s like, ‘Here, I can create another business,’” she added. “For me, whenever I get involved with something, I get really involved. Every business that I do get involved with is something that is super close to my heart.”
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Also close to her heart is husband Marc Anthony, with whom she will celebrate her sixth wedding anniversary this weekend. Lopez puts the kibosh on the widely circulated rumor that she and Anthony will renew their vows Saturday. “We will be celebrating, but no, no renewal of vows. Maybe at the seven-year itch moment, we’ll do that. Or at the 10 year. A better number.” The celebration will be “a private, personal affair, probably,” Lopez said.
The creation of Love and Glamour was an exacting process, Lopez noted. “I drive [Coty] a little bit crazy,” she said. “Because it’s always not signature enough. I go back and say things like, ‘Can we push the sandalwood a little bit more, can we make a tiny bit more sexy?’ To translate that into actual chemistry is a difficult thing. Then they go back and say, ‘What does she mean by sexy?’ And I’m like, ‘You know if you [take] that little piece that smells a little bit like wood but has a little bit of musk? But I just want you to add a little bit of sweetness. Can you do that for me?’ And then I think we are in the right direction. And then they come with one or two variations and I say, ‘No, that’s not it.’ It’s a long process.
“Making the bottle, creating the packaging, creating the campaign — it’s all so much easier than creating the juice. You always want to create something signature — that’s always kind of what I’m pushing for when working with Coty. You want it to be a combination that people have never smelled before. It’s always an exciting time, because the sky’s the limit and it can go in any direction. What I always like to do is look at where I am in my life at the moment. [Here] it was right after the babies and was when I was getting back to work and getting back to what I do again. It just felt like a time of a lot of love and that seemed very romantic to me — I said it seems like love and glamour. As a name, Love and Glamour seemed like a really aspirational, fun and beautiful thing that we could work with in many, many ways.”
Carlos Timiraos, group vice president of global marketing for Coty Prestige, was immediately on board: “Jennifer is very smart and has great instincts about what her fans want,” he said.
Love and Glamour, which Lopez created with Honorine Blanc and Harry Fremont of Firmenich, has top notes of Italian mandarin, guava and nectarine pulp; a heart of water lily, coconut orchid, orange flower absolute and jasmine petals, and a drydown of sandalwood, sensual musk and amber. The collection will include eaux de parfum in two sizes, 1.7 oz. for $49.50 and 2.5 oz. for $58, and a 6.7 oz. body lotion for $27.50.
Lopez designed the bottle with Coty Prestige’s Jon Dinapoli. “We wanted to do something that fit in with the name,” said Lopez. “We thought of a woman on a red carpet with a gown and being the height of glamour at an amazing party at some black-tie event. It looks like a sculptural piece of a woman in a gown.”
Love and Glamour will launch first at Macy’s in October, followed by a mid-November rollout to HSN and wider department store distribution. At full rollout, the scent will be available in about 2,200 department and specialty store doors.
Print advertising features Lopez with a glamorous Forties look, shot on a movie set by Craig McDean, noted Susan Kelly, senior director of global marketing for Coty Prestige. TV is also planned. The brand is also planning a presell campaign in conjunction with the launch of a promotional Web site, set to go live in September.
While Coty executives and Lopez declined to discuss sales projections, industry sources estimated Love and Glamour could do upward of $20 million at retail in the U.S. in its first year on counter, with global sales possibly topping $50 million retail. Industry sources estimated Coty will spend about $20 million globally on advertising and promotion.
Further beauty projects are possible, she added. “Over the years, we’ve talked about maybe going into cosmetics or doing skin care, because that’s something that’s really important to me. Right now, I kind of have my hands full, but that doesn’t mean I can’t grab something else.”
Among the many projects on Lopez’s plate is promotion for her latest film, “The Back-up Plan.” But unlike the title, Lopez clearly needs no back-up plan. She hints that her apparel business will have a major announcement soon; she’s in the studio doing a new album, and is in development on three film projects. Her first love, music, is taking center stage in the immediate future.
“Right now, I’m finishing up my album, which I’ve been working on for about eight months, after a transition from one record company to another,” she said. “We’re really trying to finish up to get the record out this year at some point. I’ll probably do that for the next few months, and see what happens from there. The thing with this business is you go where it takes you. But I can’t tell you what in two or three months I’ll be doing, because a movie might come together very quickly, or I’ll be off on tour — you just kind of go with it.”
Don’t expect any major changes in genre, however, Lopez emphasized. “I like hot beats. I like dance music and pop music,” she said. “It’s not going to be a great departure, but I want it to be new and modern and feel current, with the same messaging that I’ve always had in my music — which is about love. And hopefully [make it] more insightful and show more growth. Again, always trying to top what you did last time, to grow from the point you were [at] in the previous album. That’s pretty much what I am always striving for. But, also, just to make great music. Sometimes, you just have to keep it simple.”
Simple, perhaps, but certainly not easy timewise. But that doesn’t bother her. “I like where [my career] is at. I want to keep doing the same things,” she said. “For me, I’m at a point in my life as an artist where I feel very confident and very, let’s say, discerning. I just want to do great work, whether it’s a fragrance, a song, an album, a film, whatever it is. And performing, live performances — making that a big part of my career is a big goal over the next five years. It’s all just about growing — growing, learning and creating and continuing that path.”
And beauty will continue to be an important focus for Lopez. “From a very young age, I was taught that beauty was something that was inside, and that it was reflected on the outside,” she explained. “I always remember that, especially when I’m not feeling beautiful — [I ask myself] what’s wrong on the inside. That’s what I always work on. I work on trying to be a great person, and be a great mom, a great wife, a great friend. And be productive, and be happy and fulfilled. And I always feel like those are my most beautiful moments. And confidence. Confidence is always something I associate with beauty, as well.”